Rick Ross’ album Rather You Than Me wasn’t even two hours old when he got on the stage last night at SXSW’s Mazda Studio at Empire Garage, but he had the hip-hop industry on the edge of their seats.
Everyone was still buzzing about (and anticipating) Rozay’s calmly delivered yet scathing words towards Birdman on the track “Idols Become Rivals.”, and there was a moment when Ross looked at his DJ Sam Sneak and the song started to play, but it was just tease. The music stopped and the Miami-bred legend spoke about RYTM.
“My new album, you can smoke to it, f—k to it,” Ross said, and further explained that his goal with the project was to “push the culture forward.”
He delivered plenty off his new opus, however. “Trap, Trap, Trap” kicked off towards the beginning of his set and Wale came out as a surprise performer, joining Rozay, Sneak, and Ross’ stage tags team partner Whole Slab.
“Pop That,” “Not A Star,” and “9 Piece” supervened with Ross and Slab calling for Birdman to “Free Weezy” out of his Cash Money contract.
After the turn-up on “Purple Lamborghini,” Ross went back to his new bag of tricks with the triumphant back-breaking bass of “Summer Seventeen.”
“Back to standin’ on the Ave. with a couple birds,” he rapped and bounced with Slab. “If you a killer well I’m tryna see / ‘Cause calling the police the only thing free / I had to park that purple Lamborghini / And pull that Chevy back out on the cement / I’m from the city where they kill for nothin’ / And all Renzel do is push a button.”
The baleful horns of “She On My Dick” filled the venue as Ross glided over the beat. The pace slowed down, but Rozay actually hit harder with the soulful fan favorite “Tears of Joy.” The Boss then concluded with bluster, blazing the crowd with “F*ckwithmeyouknowigotit.”